Arizona Gambling Laws

For many years, Arizona was a staunchly anti-online wagering state, however, come April 2021, the winds of change finally blew through the Grand Canyon State.

Confronted by the economic downturns of the global pandemic, Arizona Governor Doug Ducey and a Navajo Nation attorney fought to expand the state’s gaming options. Tribal Casinos led the way in opening up the sports betting industry in Arizona, both land-based and online.

State Legislators finally came onboard with the Tribes and passed a pair of sports betting bills and the Governor signed NJ-style online sports betting sites into law later the same month. Arizona Sports Betting is expected to begin in September 2021.

Legality of Sports Betting VS Gambling

Land-based Gambling options are widespread in Arizona, with almost every form of land-based wagering (except sports betting) having at least some legal foothold in the state. Online forms of betting are rare (for the time being at least) with the exceptions of Horse Racing Betting.

Visit our Arizona Gambling page for More information on the states online casino and other gambling Laws

Gambling Type Legal Land-Based Legal Online
Sports Betting Yes
(Scheduled for Launch – September 2021)
Yes
(Scheduled for Launch – September 2021)
Casinos Yes No
Fantasy Sports (DFS) N/A No
eSports Betting Yes
(Scheduled for Launch – September 2021)
Yes
(Scheduled for Launch – September 2021)
Poker Yes No
Horse Racing Yes Yes
Lottery No No
Charitable Gambling Yes No

Arizona Gambling Tax Rate

The tax rates on Betting in the state of Arizona are;

  • Residents 5%
  • Non-Residents 6%
  • Wins over $1200 may be subject to Federal Taxes.

Sports betting Age VS Gambling Age in Arizona

The Grand Canyon State applies a 21 years-of-age minimum age limit on all forms of legal wagering, with the exception of Charitable Gambling, where is the legal minimum age is 18.

Gambling Type Age
Sports Betting 21
Casinos 21
Horse Racing 21
Lottery 21
Charitable Gambling 18

Betting on Sports in Arizona

Arizona has long-established and successful (however, quite separate) gambling and sports industries. On the sporting side of the equation, Arizona is home to NFL, MLB, NBA and NHL franchises. For gambling, Arizona has a network of Tribal Casinos, a lottery, horse-racing tracks and a chain of Off-Track Betting (OTB’s) locations.

Given the strength of the sports industries in the state, it seemed only a matter of time until sports wagering at land-based sportsbooks and online sportsbooks was made legal, and that prediction became true in April 2021 when Governor Doug Ducey signed into Arizona State Law HB 2772.

With the sweeping change, online sportsbooks and bricks-and-mortar retail sports were given the green light (expected to launch in September 2021), alongside other changes allowing for the legalization of Daily Fantasy Sports (DFS), mobile lottery draw games and online keno games.

Arizona Online Sports Betting Laws

After Governor Doug Ducey signed Arizona’s sports betting legalization bill into law, the Arizona Department of Gaming (the ADG) announced that it will be required to draft additional regulations to fill in the blanks to what HB 2772 covers (see below);

  • The ADG) oversee the licensing and regulation of sports betting.
  • The ADG will draft and adopt regulation matters such as the state tax rate and licensing process etc.
  • Wagering on the Olympics and eSports plus professional and college sports will be permitted.
  • A minimum age of 21 years or older will apply to potential Arizona sports bettors
  • Ten sports betting licenses will be reserved for Arizona tribal gaming operators
  • Ten sports betting licenses are set to be reserved for professional sports organizations.
  • Licensees may operate bricks-and-mortar sportsbooks on premises, in addition to statewide online sports betting.

Online Fantasy Sports in Arizona

Unlike the Federal Law which determines DFS competitions games of skill and not gambling, at the Arizona State Level, DFS participation is considered a form of gambling, which the state bans. The only legal gambling in the state is limited to tribal casinos, horse-and-dog racing, and the Arizona state lottery.

In February 2016, Arizona attempted to exclude DFS from the gambling law, which would allow residents access to use DFS sites. Senate Bill 1515 was introduced, with the goal of eliminating DFS from Arizona’s definition of gambling. However, the bill didn’t last long, quickly dying in the Senate. Arizona isn’t alone in being the only state that bans DFS. Iowa, Montana, Washington and Louisiana all have laws considering DFS to be a form of illegal gambling.

There is a so-called “poison pill” provision in the Arizona Tribal Gaming Compacts that ensures that a change in the DFS law is not likely. A provision in the compacts is often referred to as ‘the poison pill’ provision, prohibiting any gaming types not listed in the compact.

As a result, none of the major DFS sites are legalized to operate or to hold real-money-contests in the state of Arizona, for its residents, nor even visitors to the state.

Esports Online Betting Laws

eSports betting was deemed legal in the State of Arizona in April 2021 with the safe passage of HB 2772, and is anticipated to be popular with the Grand Canyon State’s bettors. Legal online eSports wagering is expected to launch in September 2021).

For readers who may be unaware, ‘eSports’ is short for ‘electronic sports’ (in other words, video game play at the highest level possible). eSports are most often played in a team format (rather than individually) in leagues and tournaments internationally. Leading video game development companies have launched their own pro leagues, and as live streaming technology has improved dramatically, it has transformed eSports competitions into global betting events.

High-profile electronic games such as Fortnite, Dota 2, League of Legends, Overwatch, CS:GO, and Call of Duty all have their own leagues and sold-out stadium tournaments and competitions.

In developed sports betting markets such as Canada, Britain, France and Australia, or even Nevada or New Jersey, sportsbooks now offer a range of betting markets across all major eSports tournaments.

When sports betting is legalized in Arizona, watch for eSports betting to be offered at your favorite sportsbook in the state.

Horse Racing

Horse Racing Betting is 100% legal (both on course/track side and online) for all residents of, and visitors to the state of Arizona. Federal laws provide for each state to rule on the legality of horse racing betting. As a result, many states permit their residents and visitors to bet on horse races both Track side, Off Track Betting and online. Since the re-legalization in Arizona in 2015, most of the largest horse betting websites across the United States have a presence in the state.

Trackside Betting

Arizona currently has 5 live horse racing and 2 greyhound racing track facilities.

Off Track Betting (OTB) in Arizona

Off track betting and simulcast racing are offered at Arizona’s extensive network of more than 30 OTB locations across the state. Betting on races in Arizona, across the United States and most major racing locations worldwide are all available in Arizona’s OTB’s.

Online Horse Racing in Arizona

Since the 2015 re-legalization in Arizona, major U.S. online horse racing betting sites all accept customers from the state. and offer real money bets on horses and greyhounds for Arizona residents and visitors to the state.

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